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Final Flights

Rating: 2 votes, 1.00 average.
Well, I think I have almost exhausted the recreation of my flying days. There are still a few flights I did not re-fly, and there are a few planes I did not revisit (including retractable versions of the Saratoga and Cherokee 180.) I may still fly those flights on the computer, but I will not blog them. I have decided to wrap this up by recreating my final flights in the planes I flew the most.

Cessna 150/152: This was the first plane I flew, but I realize I do not have one for FS2004. (I had used FSX when I started the blog.) I quickly locate and download a version. Spawning on the runway with the engine running, I look around this “new” plane. The cockpit view is missing a couple of instruments, but the virtual cockpit is fully functional. The virtual cockpit also gives a sense of how small and cramped the cabin is. I set the heading bug on the DG, and depart Angleton on a course of 299⁰. Up in the air, I go to the chase plane view and look at the little Cessna from every direction. Behind me I can see the Gulf of Mexico in the distance; ahead, miles and miles of Texas. I’m not sure why I had done a touch-n-go in Eagle Lake, other than it was on the route, but I successfully replicate locating the airport, entering the pattern, landing and returning back on course. Closer to Austin, I recognize some features on the ground: Highway 71; the winding Colorado River; and, the Smithville airport with the rising terrain at one end of the runway. There is no speeding up the sim rate or moving along the route on the map for this cross-country. Eventually, Austin Executive comes into view. I enter the pattern, but get distracted by a Piper Comanche a few miles in front of me and extend the base leg a little long. I have to turn back to get lined up on final, but manage to straighten it out and land on the narrow runway. I taxi to the only building, pull back on the mixture, turn off the avionics and main switches, and turn off the magnetos. Final flight in the C150.

C150 HB-SCA (FS2004)
From: KLBX (Brazoria County, Texas) To: KEGL (Eagle Lake, Texas) To: 3R3 (Austin Executive, Texas)

June 24, 1990
C152 N6571L
From: LBX (Brazoria Co., Angleton) To: EGl (Eagle Lake) To: 3R3 (Austin Executive)
SEL 1.9 hrs (Total Time In Type: 29.6 hrs)

Cessna 172: I appear on the runway at Austin Executive pointing north. Everything appears to be working, so I depart straight out for a few touch-n-go’s. I quickly climb straight ahead a thousand feet, and can see the departure runway out the back window. Left turn to the west, then turn south to parallel the runway. I can see the Austin skyline in the distance. Abeam the place on the runway where I had just started, I pull the throttle all the way back. When the speed slows down to the white arc on the airspeed indicator, I apply flaps. When the runway is 45° behind my left shoulder, I turn east while descending. More flaps, and I turn back to the north to line up on final. I have to adjust the throttle to maintain speed and altitude and worry a little about the electrical transmission lines in front of me. The 172 is very solid, and the landing is good. I raise the flaps, push in the throttle, and repeat the process two more times. Again, I taxi off the runway and shut down the engine before exiting the program. Last flight in the Cessna 172.

C172 N176CM (FS2004)
From: 3R3 (Austin Executive, Texas) To: Local

July 11, 1990
C172 N6601D
From: 3R3 (Austin Executive) To: Local
SEL .5 hrs (Total Time In Type: 11.5 hrs)

Cherokee 140: This is a very familiar cockpit. The sim has a worn look, which is appropriate. From the outside, the Cherokee looks squatty and slightly ugly, but I never saw it that way. I take off from Bremerton and the scenery is just beautiful. The Olympic Mountains are right there. I see the famous floating pontoon bridge across the Hood Canal and the submarine base at Bangor, but no subs. I fly over the Bremerton shipyards where I saw the mighty Missouri battleship, but there are no warships. I do see ferries and cargo vessels in the Puget Sound, and the skyline of Seattle, including the Space Needle. The Cascade Range is in the distance. I turn back toward Port Orchard and Vashon Island and cruise along the coast. I look for Mt. Rainier, but as in real life, sometimes it hides. At the bottom of the Hood, I turn back into the Kitsap Peninsula and back towards the airport. I fly a right-hand pattern for the north runway and extend the flaps on the base leg. (The electric motor noise is wrong. The Cherokee flaps are deployed manually by a lever between the seats.) I have a nice landing and taxi to the ramp to park beside what looks like an Otter on amphibious floats. Mixture lean, mains off, mags off. Final flight in the Cherokee 140.

PA28-140 OYDHD (FS2004)
From: KPWT (Bremerton, Washington) To: Local

October 3, 1995
PA28-140 N55633
From: PWT (Bremerton, Washington) To: Local
SEL .5 hrs (Total Time In Type: 580.2 hrs)

Beech Duchess: I spent a lot of time and money getting my multiengine license, only to give up flying all together. Oh, well. I haven’t spent a lot of time on the simulator Duchess, mainly because there is no airspeed indicator, no tachs, and no dual throttles on my Flightsim yoke. But, I can get it to fly. I start on the runway at Georgetown and lift off near the end. I retract the gear and turn to the east to fly around a bit. The GPS works, which gives me a groundspeed indication. I maneuver a bit and enjoy the views, then head back to the airport. I get lined up, reduce power, lower the gear, and lower the flaps. There is not enough control authority to flare, though, and I crash on the runway. I spawn in the air, and line up again. With elevator trim, I’m able to hold the nose up and land. I taxi to the gas pump, and find I am able to shut down each engine individually using E1 and E2 and the mixture. Maybe there is more to explore with this sim, but this ends the recreation of my last flight in a Duchess.

BE76 GBOFC (FS2004)
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local

August 31, 1999
BE76 N3733G
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local
MEL 1.0 hrs (Total Time in Type: 44.8 hrs)

Piper Saratoga: This was a great plane, and the Cherokee 6 is a great sim. I start on the runway at Georgetown and fly south along Interstate 35 at 2500 feet. I pass Austin Executive and Austin Bergstrom airports, then drop below 1000 feet to fly between the skyscrapers of downtown Austin. I turn west and fly over Lake Travis before turning back to Georgetown. The cockpit, virtual cockpit, and chase plane views are all great. I enter the pattern for KGTU and fly a nice downwind, base, and final, but damned if I don’t crash just a few feet short of the runway. I immediately fly another circuit just to prove I can do it. I taxi to the hangars and take one last look inside and out before I pull the mixture and turn off the mags and the mains.

PA32-300 N30062 (FS2004)
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local

September 23, 1999
PA32-301 N8213Z
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local
SEL 1.5 hrs (Total Time in Type: 301.7 hrs)

Grob109B Motoglider: This was my last flight as pilot in command. I almost forget to use the joystick instead of the yoke for this recreation. It has been a while since I flew this sim, but everything looks familiar. I take off from Georgetown Municipal and fly west, climbing to 5000 feet. The forward airspeed is slow, but the vertical airspeed is like an elevator. At altitude, I shut off the engine and (after fumbling a bit) feather the prop. There is no lift to be found, but I make lazy circles as I slowly descend. At 1000 feet, I restart the engine and try to find my way back to the airport. I see that I am pretty far away, so climb again and soar again before restarting much closer to the runway. I make a power landing using the speed brakes. I turn around on the runway (because the rudder works so well with the joystick), then taxi to the terminal. One last look around before shutting it down.

Grob109 ZH268 (FS2004)
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local

June 18, 2000
Grob109B N309BG
From: KGTU (Georgetown, Texas) To: Local
Glider 1.5 hrs (Total Time in Type: 20.7 hrs)

I hope you have enjoyed flying along with me as I re-lived some adventures. I also hope that some may be inspired to recreate their own adventures, or maybe try flying a real plane. If I can do it, you can. Yanking and banking in a supersonic fighter is a hoot, but just flying around the pattern in a single engine plane is also challenging and rewarding. Please leave a comment if you enjoyed the blog. Happy flying!

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  1. Tariq.Hossenbux's Avatar
    Described just like someone who was really there.